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#RandReport: Rand gains, Anglo, Sibanye shine on deal

The rand traded at 13,669 to the dollar by 1409 GMT, a 0,39 percent gain over Tuesday’s close.

Amplats sold its labour-intensive Rustenburg mine in South Africa to Sibanye for R4,5 billion as it pivots more mechanised sites, a move that investors gave the thumbs up. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Anglo American Platinum and Sibanye Gold helped lift South African stocks on Wednesday after they sealed a major mining deal while the rand rallied on global hopes for a Chinese stimulus.

Amplats sold its labour-intensive Rustenburg mine in South Africa to Sibanye for R4,5 billion as it pivots more mechanised sites, a move that investors gave the thumbs up.

Sibanye added 5,4 percent to R18,50, while Amplats climbed three percent to R323,42 and its parent company, global mining group Anglo American, saw its shares in Johannesburg shoot up almost 5,4 percent to R157,38.

Rustenburg, the epicentre of an often violent five-month platinum strike last year, has been a troubled asset for Anglo and analysts said it had done well to finally offload it.

"A positive step in improving Anglo's operating structure and investment rating, and boosts credibility of Anglo's management," RBC Capital Markets said in a note.

The benchmark Top-40 index rose 0,32 percent to 44,249 while the broader All-share index climbed 0,30 percent to 49,723, the second straight day of gains.

On the foreign exchange market, the rand also rallied for a second straight session, tracking global markets as hopes of stimulus out of China soothed investor sentiment.

The rand traded at 13,669 to the dollar by 1409 GMT, a 0,39 percent gain over Tuesday's close.

Government bonds also firmed, with the yield for the benchmark instrument due in 2026 falling 3,5 basis points to 8,455 percent.

"It is risk-on all of a sudden. Hopes of stimulus out of China have seen all risk assets rally. The rand is merely caught up in the surge", said John Cairns, a currency strategist at Rand Merchant Bank.

China's Finance Ministry said it would strengthen fiscal policy, boost infrastructure spending and speed up tax reform, reassuring global markets that Beijing can keep its economy on track.

Investors shrugged off local business confidence data for the third quarter which showed retail confidence fell due to a further slackening in sales volumes and declining profits.

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